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tv   America This Morning  ABC  December 25, 2009 4:30am-5:00am EST

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making news this morning -- christmas celebration around the world. but at the vatican, some scary scenes, as the pope gets taken to the ground. holiday homecoming for the father and son. david goldman and his son, sean, are back on u.s. soil. and incredible courage. want some inspiration this morning? wait to hear this veteran's story. it's christmas, december 25th, 2009. good morning. and merry christmas. i'm vinita nair. >> and i'm todd connor, sitting in for jeremy hubbard. millions of christians are waking up this morning to celebrate the birth of christ. and for some, the arrival of santa claus.
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it was the traditional midnight mass at st. patrick's cathedral here in new york city. >> for those working in the national guard for peacekeeping in kosovo, it was a day to open presents. americans serving in iraq also attended a christmas eve service. overseas, there was a scare at the vatican. a woman jumped over a barrier and knocked down pope benedict. lama hasan joins us from london with the latest. >> reporter: good morning, vinita. the incident may have been over in just a matter of seconds. but it was still a serious security breach. another reminder of how vulnerable the pope is during these public gatherings. as the pope was beginning his midnight mass procession at st. peter's basilica, a woman jumped over the barrier, yelling at the pope, and hitting him down. you can hear the faithful gasping in shock. >> all of a sudden, this american flew over the barricade.
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and the holy father went down. and all of a sudden, all of the security people were on top of it. >> it took just seconds for the vatican security guards to wrestle her to the ground. unhurt, the 82-year-old pontiff, quickly got up and continued with the christmas eve celebrations. it's not the first time this woman has tried to get closer to pope benedict. at the end of last year's christmas message, she rushed up to him, but was stopped by security just in time. there are reports that she is mentally unstable. earlier, the pope appeared at the window of his studio, to light a candle, a symbol of peace. all over the world, the faithful have been marking the day. from china, where thousands of catholics were celebrating christmas eve mass. to the holy land. in bethlehem, the day began with a march by a boy scout band. ending with a mass at st. catharine's church, next to the church of the nativity. the message this year, peace and security for everybody. and in poland, where christmas
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just wouldn't be christmas, without a nativity scene. and, of course, pope benedict xvi will go on with his christmas day schedule today. deliver his annual christmas day message in st. peters square at the vatican. vinita? >> the attack was much less worse than it looked. lama hasan, from london this morning. thanks. president obama and his family are in hawaii this morning, for the first day of their christmas vacation. there are no public events on their schedule, while they stay on a rented beach compound on the island of oahu. it's mr. obama's first trip as president to the state where he grew up. president obama delayed his trip until the senate passed the health care bill. robert byrd arrived in a wheelchair and said, this is for my friend, edward kennedy. the bill passed on a straight party line vote.
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an american father and his son will wake up under the same roof for the first time in five years today. david goldman was reunited with his son, sean, in rio de janeiro. the goldmans then flew to florida, aboard a charter jet. they are expected to spend a few days in the orlando area, before returning to home in new jersey. just in time for christmas, it is a white chstmas across much of the nation's midsection, still taking a pounding from a record-setting snowstorm. accuweather's raychel harvey-jones has more on the storm that also brought severe weather to the south. >> thank you, good morning. and certainly, merry christmas. now, this storm system created ten tornado reports across louisiana and mississippi yesterday. tornado warning across the region has expired. but you can still see very heavy rain from mississippi, right the way through the southeast. dallas, also saw some very rare snow from this storm system.
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oklahoma city 60-mile-per-hour wind gusts and 13 inches of snow on the ground. we're dealing with a lot of moisture, that will cause major travel problems. if you don't have to leave the house this christmas day, my advice would be to stay at home. impacting rager roadways, from oklahoma to the dakotas. i-80, i-90, i-70, all impacted by this system. we're looking at very slippery travel across michigan and wisconsin, as we do see a mixture of ice across the region. heavy snow continues to fall, with the high winds, will create terrible driving conditions. vinita, todd, it's back to you. >> at least the kids will be happy. here's the rest of your christmas day forecast. that big storm brings rain from the great lakes to the southeast. freezing rain and icing from the carolina appalachians up to pennsylvania and new york. >> 40s in the northeast. only 19 in omaha. 21 in kansas city. and 23 in fargo. it's 28 in boise. 29 in salt lake city.
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and 59 in phoenix. when we come back, plenty to be happy about if you're an apple shareholder. the reason why is part of our business news, coming up. and a new warning about prescription drugs one sweet ta.
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welcome back, everyone. time, now, for a check of market activity, starting overseas. tokyo's nikkei average dropped 42 points today. hong kong's hang seng is up sharply in late trading. in london, the ftse is closed for christmas. it finished yesterday at a 15-month high, though.
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wall street also closed, of course. the dow finished yesterday at 10,520, after gaining 53 points. and the nasdaq picked up 16, closing at 2285. the obama administration has pledged to provide unlimited aid to fannie mae and freddie mac. the move threats the government bypass an emergency funds limit without asking congress. this comes just after fannie and freddie say their executives are receiving millions of dollars in bonuses. apple closed at an all-time high, above $209. the reason? there's a lot of buzz about an upcoming apple product, said to be a tablet computer. reports say it would have a touch-sensitive screen. but it would be larger, like the amazon kindle. retailers looking for a holiday shopping surge, may have found it. there are reports that shoppers
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finally started buying, on christmas eve. waiting for last-minute deals. and several retailers are planning to hold christmas day sales online, in hopes of turning around a sluggish holiday season. and if you're looking for economic stimulus, you might want to start by counting your pennies. a new survey, commissioned by visa, say americans cannot account for an average of $21 in catch each week. the survey found most people made their mystery purchases by buying food, eating out, or enjoying a night out on the town. i've had that problem a few times. >> i think we all have.
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now, a look at the road conditions you can expect this christmas morning. blowing snow makes driving treacherous from texas to the
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dakotas. expect road closures on parts of i-94, 70. icing and rain on the east coast. if you are flyg today, expect airport delays from dallas to denver and cincinnati to orlando. that's just about everywhere except the west coast. well, the taliban has released new video it says has captured american soldier, bowe bergdahl. the man identifies himself as bergdahl. bergdahl went missing at the end of june, in eastern afghanistan. now, the story of a veteran who refuses to give in. he is offering lessons about strength and resilience, as martha raddatz reports. >> reporter: it is nothing short of amazing, walking next to clu lieutenant colonel tim karcher. >> you choose your yourself. do you want this to be a life-ending experience? or a life-changing experience? >> reporter: for months, i
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feared that karcher's injuries would end his life. and at times, so did he. >> i thought wow. this is what it feels like to die. >> reporter: i had spent in days with karcher in baghdad, during his three deployments. >> the iraqis, they've really stepped up. and they are really taking the lead in so many areas. >> reporter: so much so, that by mid-june, karcher gave command of sadr city neighborhood, to the iraqis. but days later, it was clear, the war was far from over. >> a large explosion. and i remember feeling some pain. i could see my rifle laying in pieces on the floor board. but then, i realized that the reason i could see them was because i didn't have any legs. >> reporter: back home, tim's wife and three daughters were getting ready for church. >> tim has been hurt. it hits you. >> reporter: it would only get
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worse. a dust storm had prevented medevac helicopters from reaching karcher immediately after he was injured. he lost massive amounts of blood during the drive to the combat hospital. by the time he was flown to walter reed hospital, days later, bacteria from the dust, began invading his heart, kid y kidneys and lungs. >> it was a rollercoaster. at one point, i told him, it was okay. if he needed to let go, i could do it. so- >> reporter: but karcher refused to die. after three months of intensive care, he was flown back home to texas. seeing his girls for the first time since he deployed eight months earlier, the once 6'4", 225-pound soldier, now weighed barely 100 pounds. >> i was really glad to see him because i hadn't seen him in such a long time.
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>> it was hard seeing him so skinny and knowing he had gone through so much. >> i was really happy to see him. and just the fact he can make jokes about it all. >> my two older daughters have beat me at the top. the goal is to gain four or five more inches so i can look down on them again. >> reporter: as his balance improves, karcher will be given longer prosthetic legs. he hopes for something else, as well. the 43-year-old soldier has a ofound sense of duty. >> whatever the army decides i can do best, i'll do it. as long as they give me a job i look at as charity, i'll walk away from it. but as long as i can make a contribution, serving soldiers, i'll do it, until i die. >> reporter: for now, he sees his soldiers return from iraq. lieutenant conditional tim karcher is determined to stand d greet them when they arrive.
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martha raddatz, abc news, parker heights, texas. a controversial policy which punished soldiers everybo s ser iraq, for pregnancy, has been replaced. joenl tony cucolo set off a firestorm of criticism, when he threatened to punish soldiers for being pregnant or fathering a child. a volcano poses a huge threat keeping the army and scientists busy this holiday. abc's morgargaret conley is the. >> reporter: as flows of red lava loom in the distance, around the clock.nitor mayon uncertain if they were raise or lower the alert level from its second-highest stage. they monitor the gas output, magma pressure and each
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earthquake. >> we have to give a few days before we really assess if it is still going up or going down. >> reporter: in town, the philippine army steps up their patrols. we just entered a restricted area with the army. and they're doing forced evacuations to get residents still living in their homes into the city. going house-to-house, the army expedites the evacuation process. they help collect laundry and load personal belongings as residents leave with their families, their children. trying to take everything with them that they can. leaving their christmas trees inside, their homes closed for the holidays. with the alert level at the second-highest for nearly a week, and volcanic activity near its peak, the people here anxiously anticipate the next stage of mayon. margaret conley, abc news, the philippines. a sports broadcasting legend
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has died. george michael was the long-time host of "the george michael sports machine." he pioneered the idea of a national highlights sports show before espn. it was once said he could show you five minutes of highlights in four minutes. george michael was 70. some bowl game highlights from will selva at espn news. >> good morning. and happy holidays. there was only one bowl game on christmas eve. the sheridan hawaii bowl. jones returning to hawaii stadium. cal padrone, to cole beasley. down to the 10 yard line. the mustangs looking to punch it in. they hand it off to sean gray-mcneil. that was a good move. mcneil, nine-yard touchdown scamper. smu leading 7-0. looking for more.
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padron, up top to emanuel sanders. 57-yard gain. now, down inside the 10. two plays later, after a face mask penalty on the bad of mcneil, will run it in again. second touchdown of the game. mcneal, 63 yards on the ground. second quarter, padron to sanders. sanders, 17-yard touchdown. smu leading 24-0. late second, padron, looking for beasley. he's a good man to find. smu leads 31-0. and they roll, 45-10. remember, you can always stay current with espn news. now, back to new york and "america this morning." >> thank you very much. up next, holiday dangers for young kids, visiting grandma and grand grandpa. >> the perils in the medicine cabinet. how to avoid a trip to the cabinet. how to avoid a trip to the emergency room, next. itis going?
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welcom welcome back. if you have young children, tis the season to beware at grandma's. >> hospitals see a lott of young patients this time of year. >> medical editor, dr. richard besser reports on the so-called granny effect. >> reporter: how many young children exposed to medicines end up in the emergency room every year? >> about 100,000 each year in a department like this. >> reporter: really? dr. kevin osterhaut warns the holidays can be an especially dangerous time. as he learned in his own home. >> i got a frantic call from my wife because she found my son, then about a year of age, with a pill in his mouth. that pill had come from the medicines that my father had brought to my house with him for the holiday. >> reporter: his son wasine. but the incident is an example of what he calls the granny effect. >> there have been some studies that suggest that as many as 10% to 20% of children's exposures
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to medicines may actually be exposures to their grandparents' medicines. >> reporter: part of the problem? the pill organizers that many seniors and travelers use. this 4-year-old, who recently learned the alphabet, seemed to like the letters on those pill boxes. you got another one? and while child-resistant bottles can help, they aren't child-proof. it's important to make sure the caps are on properly. if you don't hear that click, it's not child-resistant. >> exactly. >> reporte there are other things parents can do. don't take medication in front of children, who tend to mimic adult behaviors. and don't let children know where medicines are stored. >> we need to keep medicine out of reach, out of sight and out of mind. >> reporter: so, if children don't know that they're in the cabinet in the first place, then they're out of mind? >> correct. >> reporter: richard besser, abc news, philadelphia. >> it's such a good reminder for grandparents and for parents. so many kids at home right now,
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rummaging through your things. >> yeah. and you may not see them near the bottles. put the lids back on tight. for some of you, your local news is next. >> for everyone else, "america this morning" continues after this. my muscles feel like they've been pounded... my muscles just ache... ... all over my body... ...it just doesn't go away. it's so baffling. (announcer) ! does this sound like the pain # you've been experiencing? this is fibromyalgia. chronic, widespread pain and tenderness that # affects millions. sometimes i need a hug... ...but i know #it's gonna hurt... (announcer) here is hope. understanding your pain... ...is the first " step to treating it. talk to your doctor # and visit fibrocenter.com
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(announcer) find it in the allergy aisle. no other allergy itchy eye drop works faster or longer. and finally, stoking the holiday spirit, thanks to a simple fireplace with the power to mesmerize millions.
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>> good tv is all about exciteling, action-packed images. so, why are so many new yorkers carrying a flame for a virtually static shot of a yule log? jeremy hubbard takes a look. >> reporter: it has to be one of the more simple, silly, hokey ideas on tv. the shot of a hearth, decorated for christmas. the camera is zooming in oh, so, slowly. now, bring up "o come all ye faithful." and there you have it. that's it. you're staring, believe it or not, at ratings gold. >> right now, retro is in. it's not hokey. it brings back good mem prescription. >> reporter: betty ellen runs wpx tv in new york. her station first showed the yule log back in 1966. every year, the televised fire glowed, until the late '80s, when ratings waned.
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and it was snuffed out by station management. would you consider yourself yule log geeks? >> i don't know if i'd use that word. >> reporter: he held a flame for the yule log. he started yule log.com. he amassed old articles. every christmas song ever played on the show. even o "tv guide" listings. and he soon heard from others around the world. >> i forwarded those to channel 11. and they did the right thing, bringing it back. >> it was right after 9/11. we wanted to do something that made an impact. something a little different. and we said, let's bring back the yule log. >> reporter: the yule log was number one in the ratings that christmas morning. but this fireplace stokes the holiday spirit. and besides that, you don't have to clean up after this fire. and it turns off with just a click. >> you got to love the log.

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